Entrepreneur Elon Musk is poised to overtake Amazon founder and fellow multi-billionaire Jeff Bezos in the bout to become “The Worlds Richest Person”.
The mogul behind the Tesla and SpaceX phenomenons has had a conversely successful financial year while the rest of the world’s economies have imploded as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. A 2.8% increase in Tesla share prices is now seeing him make the move for pole position in the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, which is a ranking of the 500 wealthiest people on Earth.
A figure that seems unfathomable to most – there is now ‘just’ a US $3 billion margin between the two men as Musk’s net worth hit $181.1bn on Wednesday this week. This edges him closer than ever to Bezos, who has ruled the top spot since October 2017. But he too has seen his personal fortune rise this year as demand for Amazon’s services climbed dramatically during the pandemic.
Musk’s strategy for future-proofing his business has meant that in the past 12 months his revenue has actually grown by more than $150 billion. How is that even possible you may ask? The answer is linked to that rise in Tesla’s share price, which sky-rocketed by an eye-watering 743% last year on the back of profits, recent inclusion in the S&P 500 Index, and with the backing of Wall Street and continual support from retail investors.
In a significant tidal change in the automotive industry, Tesla took over half-a-million cars to market in 2020, which is a mere fraction produced by the old guard such as Ford Motor and General Motors.
The rich list is quite telling and shows us that the 500 richest people in the world added a record $1.8 trillion to their combined net worth last year alone. The top five individuals at the very top of the list hold the greatest fortunes, all topping the $100bn mark.
As to who will be top the bill this time next year, we can only watch this space.